Winter Safety: Stay safe this winter season

By Mickey Thaxton
Associate Executive Director

Well, it’s that time of year again, and as much as we all hope not to see bad weather anytime soon, you can rest assured that Riderwood is ready. Whether it’s 2 inches or 2 feet of snow, our team is ready for the job! To set expectations, the following plans are in place: Snow removal is our primary task in the event of a storm

  1. During a snow event or active snowfall, the team will focus on main roads and main entrances to community buildings. This may mean, depending on the storm, that your secondary or side entrance may not be cleared right away.
  2. Sidewalks around buildings will be cleared during the storm, but please use caution while snow is still falling as cleared areas may get recovered as soon as we finish.
  3. All secondary sidewalks will be taken care of after snowfall stops.
  4. Parking space clearing around cars falls outside of emergency, and immediate priorities and thus those areas will be addressed after all other necessary clearing has been done.
  5. Our main focus during an event is main roads, main building entrances, emergency and
    delivery vehicle access, and open parking spaces.

You can expect emergent updates throughout the storm to be posted on Riderwood TV channel 974.  Depending on the storm, you may expect delayed or canceled services like housekeeping, transportation, and maintenance, as staff may not be able to make it in or are assigned snow removal or emergent duties. We will use our reverse 911 system (known as “Swiftreach”) to deliver automated messages to your home phone with updates about service that may be affected by the weather or deliver a written notice to your package shelf as appropriate.

As always, in an emergency of any kind, you can expect Riderwood staff to do whatever they can to assist and, no matter what, your safety is our top priority. So, as we all keep our fingers crossed we don’t see that pretty white stuff this year, please know that if we do, you can sit inside and watch it by the fireplace as the Riderwood team will take care of the rest.

In the event of a weather emergency, our Emergency Systems remain in operation:

  • Pull-Cords/Pendants: If you are well enough and can get to your phone, a call to the Security Dispatcher will usually meet your needs. However, in an emergency, do not hesitate to pull your emergency cord or press your pendant to summon assistance.
  • Riderwood EMS: If you need emergency assistance for an illness or injury, please call
    Security Dispatch at 301-572-8391 or activate your emergency pendant or pull cord.

In the event of a weather emergency or other critical incident on campus, you can stay informed by monitoring our electronic bulletin-board on Riderwood TV channel 974.

In some specific emergencies, Riderwood Administration may call you directly using our “Swift Reach” system (please see your Residents’ Handbook for more information on SwiftReach

Note: You will only be contacted on SwiftReach if we have your most current phone information! For your convenience there are resident directory update forms available at all desks. Please complete the form and return it to your front desk to update your information at any time.

Remember that you are not alone! Although we may be safe and warm during times of bad weather, it is difficult for family and friends to visit our residents. This is a good time to check in on your friends and neighbors to make sure they are well and weathering the storm without difficulty. If you are concerned about a neighbor or friend, please contact the Resident Services Coordinator/Social Worker responsible for your neighborhood.


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